Spotlight on undergraduate alumna, Ashley Pekmezian
Current position: Medical Student, University of Central Florida College of Medicine
As a Meinig School undergraduate, Ashley worked in Dr. Nelly Andarawis-Puri’s lab researching tendon biomechanics and developing a hydrogel to prevent tendonitis. She played an active role in her community during her time at Cornell as the captain of the Women’s Club Soccer team, teaching assistant, engineering peer advisor, and executive board member of the Engineering in Medicine club and Biomedical Engineering Society.
After graduation, Ashley worked at Hospital for Special Surgery in Dr. Suzanne Maher’s lab as a research engineer. Her work focused on understanding cellular and tissue level changes in cartilage due to altered mechanical loading of the knee joint. She also worked with surgeons on retrieval studies that aimed to understand why certain implant designs failed in patients. She has submitted two provisional patents, presented at the ORS and SB3C conferences, and published multiple papers on her post-graduate work.
Now attending medical school at the University of Central Florida College of Medicine, Ashley aspires to be a surgeon and help bridge engineering and medicine. Currently, her research focuses on a novel surgical operation to reduce lymphedema after axial lymph node dissection.